With the quickly developing computerized economy, even brands have begun to push their brand name limits by not only putting their registered trademarks into practice but also advancing them. Such marks, known as “Fluid Trademarks,” have now become a novel way to deal with brand advertising. Fluid Trademarks are varieties of the initially enlisted trademarks, which coexist with the basic trademark and are so made trying to improve customer intrigue and reinforce brand strength. These variations typically hold certain highlights of the original trademark while including new components. The idea of fluid trademarks is a deep contrast to the thought behind conventional trademarks, which depend on utilizing uniform and steady words, pictures, and images to make the merchandise/administrations of the proprietor recognizable among the clients. All things considered, fluid trademarks achieve buyer commitment with the assistance of dynamic and new takes on the initial trademark.
Fluid Trademarks have been in the commercial eye for a long while now. The most striking illustration of an effective Fluid Trademark is Google’s Doodles, where Google makes and shows varieties of its Google mark on its homepage. Aside from the different viewpoints, Google additionally makes these marks interactive in certain cases.
Kinds of Fluid Trademarks
Fluid Trademarks share similar features as other trademarks: they can be a word, expression, image, or design that recognizes the origin of an item or service. Nonetheless, fluid trademarks can be of different kinds. One sort could include just ornamenting the original mark so the fundamental characters of the mark stay consistent while adding new features for a restricted period. As aforementioned, Google’s doodles are an illustration of this methodology.
Some fluid trademarks render the imprint in various media however hold the fundamental shape, for example, Absolut’s vodka bottle, which holds a similar jug shape recast in an assortment of foundations and materials.
Yet another kind of fluid mark is to use a frame or a 3D container displaying different content in the same medium, for instance, MTV’s mark. Other fluid trademarks adopt varying backgrounds or moving, multiple, or ever-changing designs.
All the more as of late, in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has influenced pretty much every industry, brands have turned to fluid trademarks to extend themselves as battling and bringing issues to light against the illness.
McDonald’s had their notorious curves in the ‘M’ mark divided far separated to connote social distancing
Similarly, the letters ‘V’ and ‘W’ in the Volkswagen logo were moved far apart with a message saying “Thanks for keeping your social distance”
Security/Protection of Fluid Trademarks
Brands need to embrace a thoroughly examined procedure while adjusting fluid marks. They need to consider whether they need to register a fluid imprint and how vivaciously they need to enforce and uphold their fluid trademarks.
Since brands concoct fluid trademarks at various points in time, it is recommended to document and file separate applications for every fluid mark. Even in the wake of embracing a fluid trademark, brands ought to consistently keep utilizing the underlying and original trademark to dodge a cancellation or surrender of the base mark due to non-use. Moreover, brands should screen their inside use, discourage irregular adjustments, and keep on policing potential outsider encroachment of the mark.
In India, protection is accessible even against unregistered marks. Along these lines, regardless of whether a brand has not yet registered its fluid trademark, it will still be able to implement its privileges/rights. In the case of Proctor and Gamble vs. Joy Creators, the Delhi High Court held that a mark doesn’t need to be a replica of the registered trademark to constitute infringement. As per the court, “It will be sufficient if the plaintiff is able to show that the trademark adopted by the defendant resembles its trademark in a substantial degree, on account of extensive use of the main features found in a trademark.”
A trademark proprietor should be able to express with clearness the extent of the fluid trademark variation over which it claims rights.
Fluid Trademarks are setting down deep roots. They will be constantly seen as scrutinizing the perpetual nature of a trademark. Notwithstanding, the greatest utilization of fluid trademarks can be done by grounded and established brands that can stand to make a statement with their trademark and not run an approaching infringement hazard.
Authored by – Marvie Magotra, 4th year, Army Institute of Law